Friday, March 6th, marked the deadline for all policy bills to receive a floor vote in the opposite chamber. Having failed to receive a floor vote, several anti-gun bills are likely defeated for the session. Unfortunately, a number of bills did receive a floor vote and were sent back to their original chamber for concurrence before heading to the Governor’s desk for his signature.
The following bills passed:
Senate Bill 5434 prohibits the possession of firearms in childcare centers, including by CPL holders carrying for self-defense. In addition to leaving law-abiding citizens defenseless against criminals who ignore arbitrary boundaries, the bill requires child care centers to publicly indicate they are “gun-free zones” by posting signs outside the facilities.
Senate Bill 6288 creates an Office of Firearm Violence Prevention within the Executive Branch of the state government. Governor Jay Inslee and his administration have already made it clear where they stand on Second Amendment issues—they routinely sponsor and support gun ban legislation and initiatives designed to disarm law-abiding citizens. This office would be nothing more than a tax-payer funded lobby group whose sole purpose is to erode self-defense rights in Washington.
House Bill 2622 modifies Washington’s existing firearm surrender provisions for individuals subject to a court order. This bill compels a respondent to appear and provide proof on how and to what extent they complied with the surrender order. This is a serious encroachment on the right against compelled self-incrimination in any criminal, civil, or other government proceedings. Failure to appear results in the individual being in contempt of court, thereby putting the individual in a no-win situation.
The following bills failed to receive a floor vote:
House Bill 1010 allows the Washington State Patrol to waste taxpayer dollars destroying confiscated firearms rather than sell them to raise funds.
House Bill 2305 imposes a mandatory firearm prohibition for respondents of a Vulnerable Adult Protective Order. This order, which removes someone’s Second Amendment rights for up to 5 years, requires no criminal convictions or even charges. Due process limits restrictions on constitutional rights to only serious convictions and adjudications that provide procedural protections to the accused, which results in more reliable proceedings. The Right to Keep and Bear Arms should not be treated as a second-class right and should only be restricted when sufficient protections are in place.
House Bill 2623 prohibits an individual from possessing firearms if they are convicted of the misdemeanor crimes of unlawful aiming or discharge of a firearm. This poorly conceived legislation even applies to airguns and slingshots, and has no exceptions for an individual aiming or discharging a firearm for self-defense purposes in a location that is otherwise not authorized.
Meanwhile, HB 2947 remains in the House Finance Committee. Since it is tied to the budget, it is not subject to the same deadlines and is still considered active until the legislative session adjourns this Thursday, March 12th. House Bill 2947 bans the manufacture, possession, sale, transfer, etc. of magazines that hold more than fifteen rounds of ammunition. It appropriates funds for the State Patrol to conduct a “buy-back.” Such turn-in events serve as nothing more than propaganda for gun control advocates while failing to promote public safety in any measurable way.
Please stay tuned to your email inbox and www.nraila.org for additional updates during the final days of the session.